Viewpoint: Guest editorial: Grow Albany

This editorial is from Judy Randle and Jimmy Wilson of the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce.

The Albany Area Chamber of Commerce is a 101-year-old proactive, progressive, pro-business organization whose mission is to promote and stimulate the economic well being of its membership.

One of the ways in which we do this is through our partnership with the Albany-Dougherty Economic Development Commission and through "Grow Albany," our capital fund-raising campaign to fund economic development.

In 2010, "Grow Albany" raised $250,000 toward economic development. We can't say thank you enough to those individuals and businesses who understand the value of economic development and pledged to be involved.

Economic development is an ongoing process, and it's one that touches every aspect of life in a community and has the potential to create incredible opportunities for citizens. In 2010, the EDC directly assisted existing industries that ultimately invested more than $25.5 million in Albany-Dougherty County. That's a $25.5 million investment in our community – in our future.

In 2010 there were also new names added to our roster of local industries, including global defense firms Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics and BAE Systems, among others.

2010 was a year that saw increased economic activity in our community; as 2011 unfolds, we expect to continue to see growth in our economy. And we hope we can again count on your support by investing in economic development and investing in Albany.

For details on how you can get involved, please contact the Albany Area Chamber of Commerce at (229) 434-8700.